DNA reveals ancient girl from Siberia had Neanderthal mother and Denisovan father

DNA reveals ancient girl from Siberia had Neanderthal mother and Denisovan father

DNA reveals ancient girl from Siberia had Neanderthal mother and Denisovan father

"Genome-wide signatures show that the Denisova 11 individual has a Neanderthal and a Denisovan parent", the team wrote in their report.

They died out around 40,000 years ago, possibly as a result of competition following the exodus of homo sapiens (modern humans) from Africa between 60,000 and 40,000 years ago, although DNA analysis shows interbreeding between the two species.

Both groups disappeared some 40,000 years ago.

But finding an actual offspring of the two groups - which are more different from each other than any two present-day human groups - seemed like a rare stroke of luck, Mr Paabo said.

Denisova 11 was a first generation Neanderthal-Denisovan woman - perhaps we could call her a "Neandersovan"?

Prof Chris Stringer, a human evolution researcher at the Museum, says, 'Neanderthals might have overlapped with the Denisovans across Asia for over 300,000 years, so the fact that their lineages remained largely separate must indicate the existence of some geographic, genetic or behavioural barriers to more widespread mating through that time'.

Our own DNA provides evidence that those early modern humans interbred with Neanderthals and Denisovans.

This suggests that between ancient human species do active crossing.

"When you find a needle in a haystack, you have to start wondering if what you're really looking at is a needlestack", John Hawks, an anthropologist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison who was not involved in the study, tells The Atlantic's Zhang.


The researchers did not have much to work with - just a fragment of bone found in a remote cave in Siberia.

On the other hand, Denny's genome also revealed that her father had hints of Neanderthal ancestry as well. Having babies gave their family a desire to return to the old paths - to nourish their family with traditional, homegrown foods; rid their home of toxic chemicals and petroleum products; and give their boys a chance to know a simple, sustainable way of life.

Scientists also believe Denisovans and Homo Sapiens bred together - which explains the difference between humans. Until now, scientists had discovered only four Denisovans; the fifth turned out to be a first-generation hybrid. The bone fragment was found in 2012 at Denisova Cave (Russia) by Russian archaeologists.

That fragment came from an arm or leg bone - it is impossible to say which. Scientists have found that it belonged to a girl who died at the age of 13.

"It is striking that we find this Neandertal/Denisovan child among the handful of ancient individuals whose genomes have been sequenced", added Svante Pääbo, Director of the Department of Evolutionary Genetics at the MPI-EVA and lead author of the study.

During DNA sequencing of the bones discovered at the site, the researchers noticed that half of the chromosomes in Denisova 11 were similar to those of the other Denisovans and half of them were closer to those of the Neanderthals.

About two percent of DNA in non-Africans across the globe today originate with Neanderthals, earlier studies have shown.

"Neanderthals and Denisovans may not have had many opportunities to meet". And this occurred 20,000 years later than the Neanderthals living in the cave.

Previously it was thought that modern humans are descended from a single population of ancestors.

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